LIVE UPDATES: Elite Lefties Take the Mound in 1st Arkansas Baseball Scrimmage

Mason Molina, Hagen Smith, Arkansas baseball
photo credit: Baumology / Arkansas Athletics

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas baseball has returned to Baum-Walker Stadium. Sort of.

Preseason practices get underway with the Razorbacks’ first intrasquad scrimmage at 2:30 p.m. CT Friday.

It will feature two-thirds of Arkansas’ touted weekend rotation, left-handers Hagen Smith and Mason Molina, going up against each other.

Best of Arkansas Sports is in the building and will post updates below…

LIVE UPDATES — Arkansas Baseball Scrimmage

Pregame Notes

Peyton Stovall is not playing today because of an illness, per a UA spokesperson.

The Gray team is playing with two DHs and without a second baseman in its starting lineup. Nolan Souza and Jared Sprague-Lott will rotate playing second base when they’re not hitting for the Red.

T-1st: Red 1, Gray 0

Hagen Smith was almost perfect in the top of the first inning. He sat 98-99 mph, but struck out Ty Wilmsmeyer and Peyton Holt with his slider. He went to that pitch again against Kendall Diggs and he crushed it over the right field fence. It was a 359-foot blast that had an exit velocity of 100 mph. It didn’t seem to bother him, though, as he bounced back by striking out Jayson Jones on three pitches – the last one of which was a 100 mph fastball. He threw 14 total pitches.

B-1st: Red 1, Gray 0

Mason Molina’s stuff wasn’t as overpowering, but he was still pretty good in the first inning. He got Will Edmunson to ground out back to third and Hudson White to fly out to center before walking Jack Wagner. He bounced back by striking out Wehiwa Aloy.

T-2nd: Red 1, Gray 0

Smith did not come out for a second inning of work. Right-hander Will McEntire came in and went 1-2-3. Ben McLaughlin grounded out back to him (and McEntire looked calm and smooth fielding it). Ryder Helfrick made solid contact toward right-center, but Edmunson did a nice job tracking it down for the out. McEntire ended the inning by striking out Jared Sprague-Lott.

B-2nd: Red 1, Gray 0

Unlike Smith, Molina came back out for a second inning of work. He plunked Parker Rowland with his first pitch. The coaching staff sent Aloy to first to run for him, allowing Rowland to hit again. He hit a slow roller to third that Holt fielded, but dropped, allowing him to reach on an error. With two runners on, Molina struck out Ross Lovich and Hunter Grimes back-to-back, the latter going down looking. Reese Robinett drew a walk to load the bases, but Molina got out of it by getting Ty Waid to pop out to shallow center that the second baseman was able to catch.

T-3rd: Red 1, Gray 0

McEntire was just about as good in his second inning of work as he was in his first. He didn’t allow a base runner until Wilmsmeyer put together a great two-out at bat, drawing a full-count walk. That came after Hudson Polk popped out to second and Nolan Souza struck out looking. McEntire bounced back by getting Holt to fly out to right field.

B-3rd: Red 1, Gray 0

It’s time for the Jake Faherty experience.

He looked pretty good this time. He also didn’t do it by only blowing guys away with his elite velocity. He used some offspeed stuff to induce a ground out to short by Edmunson, strike out White and get Wagner to ground out to second. On that last out, Souza made a nice pick, as it was kind of a slow, sinking line drive that he snagged off a bounce.

T-4th: Red 3, Gray 0

Have a day Kendall Diggs. The junior slugger crushed the first pitch from Gage Wood off the Hunt Center in right. It was a 368-foot blast that left the bat at 104 mph. Wood then struck out Jones and McLaughlin, but Helfrick smacked a two-out homer to right. His traveled 353 feet and had a 102 mph exit velocity. Wood then struck out Sprague-Lott to end the inning.

B-4th: Red 3, Gray 1

Faherty came back out for a second inning of work and his first pitch was hit over the fence. Aloy was sitting on an offspeed pitch and pulled it into the left field bullpen. It had a 109 mph exit velocity and traveled 368 feet. Faherty then walked Rowland.

The wheels could have fallen off, but Faherty responded well. He struck out Lovich and Grimes back-to-back, with a pick-off of Rowland mixed in between. Rowland left early and Faherty recognized it in time to spin and get him at second.

T-5th: Red 3, Gray 1

Wood’s second innings of work was much better. He struck out Polk (looking) and Souza (swinging) to start the inning before Wilmsmeyer popped out to shallow right, which was caught by the second baseman. Aside from the two homers, the right-hander from Batesville looked pretty good.

B-5th: Red 3, Gray 3

Right-hander Koty Frank is on the mound to finish off the scrimmage. It’s his first live outing in the stadium since going down with a season-ending injury last year. He walked Robinett to start the inning and then a wild pitch moved him into scoring position. Waid followed with a blooper to center that fell for an RBI. That brought up the top of the order and Edmunson delivered a game-tying RBI double that hit off the base of the wall in left. He represents what is essentially the game-winning run.

White also got a hit, with a single to center, but Edmunson held up on the play and didn’t score. He had to stop at third. That put runners on the corners for Wagner, who went down swinging for the first out. Frank got out of it by inducing a 4-6-3 double play by Aloy.

The scrimmage ends in a tie.

Starting Lineups

1. Ty Wilmsmeyer – CF1. Will Edmunson – CF
2. Peyton Holt – 3B2. Hudson White – C
3. Kendall Diggs – RF3. Jack Wagner – 1B
4. Jayson Jones – LF4. Wehiwa Aloy – SS
5. Ben McLaughlin – 1B5. Parker Rowland – DH
6. Ryder Helfrick – C6. Ross Lovich – RF
7. Jared Sprague-Lott – SS7. Hunter Grimes – LF
8. Hudson Polk – DH8. Reese Robinett – 3B
9. Nolan Souza – 2B9. Ty Waid – DH
Pitching: LHP Mason MolinaPitching: LHP Hagen Smith


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